Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

It was a beautiful sunny day in NC - much of the snow is gone but there are still patches in areas that are essentially shaded all day.  Tomorrow also promises to be a nice one - into the 60s a week after we got our snow!  A neighbor commented that he believes our beautiful weather is a wonderful omen for 2011  - a thought worth passing on.

My New Year's Eve will be spent watching a movie with the family.  We always enjoy a quiet end to the year - although we do usually step out on the porch at midnight and scream and yell in the new year!

2010 is ending on a good note for me.  I just won 2 different giveaways from various blogs.  The first is an exciting looking book from Tara at Sew Unique Creations.  Check out her blog here.

Then, I actually won something in the Sew Mama Sew giveaway from Green Bag Lady!  I won a fabric bag and additional fabric to make my own to giveaway to someone else.  How cool is that!  

I put it to good use right away - and used it to carry some newly purchased fabric!    Check out the site here.  The pattern for the bag is here and fabric was donated by Amy Butler design.  It is a wonderful lightweight bag and I will certainly make a second bag and then give it away.  I just love reusable bags.

Finally, I'm thinking about participating in a mystery quilt on New Year's Day.  My two week vacation from work is coming quickly to and end so can't think of a better way to spend the day.  You can join in over at Planet Patchwork.

My best wishes to you and yours for a wonderful 2011.  Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Feels like I am loosing a good friend

There are several things that are high on my list of relaxing things to do.  Read a book, cup of tea, glass of wine and of course a walk on the beach.  There is also visiting a fabric shop - especially a visit when you are really just there to browse to see what inspiration may be sparked as a result.

Several year ago, I discovered a shop in Apex somewhat by accident - driving back from taking my kids to the park, taking a slightly different route home.  There it was - it was actually my daughter who was the one who spied it.  Many yards of fabric later, this shop - my all time favorite quilt shop - Plain & Simple in Apex, NC - is closing its doors.

It was a beautiful place - full of much inspiration.  Thanks for all the beautiful fabric.

I joined lots of people today as we shopped for fabric.  I got some fat quarters and a jelly roll.

I did get several multiple yard cuts of some fabric - some Pure (!), some tea themed and some gold that will make a good quilt backing at some point.

 Thanks to all the wonderful people who worked there!   I will miss you!

Happy Stitching!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Snowed in

The snow started late Christmas day and by the time it was over on Sunday, we had about 5 inches in central NC.  That made for some fun sledding with the kids and a poor attempt at a snow man.

It also made for some great sewing time.  One of the things that came together quite quickly was a project I had planned to get to before the holidays but never had the time.  I do hope to quilt it this week and it will be ready to go for next year.    I used a panel of 12 days of Christmas by Kate Spain.   (If you like, you can probably get the panel at your favorite quilt store - perhaps even on sale!)

I also did some work on a Thimbleberries BOM from Fat Quarter Shop (photos later this week) where I need to make a sawtooth border that involves 196 1/2 square triangles.  Ugh.  Decided to make 1/4 of them each day so got one of the top borders done last night!

Happy Stitching!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A wonderful Christmas!

It was a wonderful relaxing Christmas.  I snapped a photo of the tree before the presents were opened

I had incredible fun making many gifts this year and I wanted to share.

For my husband, an orange star wall hanging (his favorite color)

For my son, graduating from high school class of 2011, another wall hanging for over his computer:

Two doll quilts for American Girl dolls.  The first is for my daughter:

and this one for a my other daughter's friends doll:

I actually made 11 of these bags from a single Pure jelly roll (with a few strips leftover).  These all went to sisters, sisters in law, my mom, my giveaway winner and... oh yeah, one for me!

Then I made 5 of these bags for teacher gifts and tucked a gift card inside:

One final bag:

I made 4 tree quilts - 3 for friends and one for me (!)

I made 2 coffee small quilts (or large mug rugs) for hostess gifts:

I made 3 small wreath quilts - 2 as gifts and 1 for me.  (The pattern is from the 12 Days of Christmas Fat Quarter Shop block of the month.)

Would love to see what you made this year.
Happy Stitching!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

Thanks for visiting my blog.   I wish you a very Merry Christmas!

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Just a few more days until Christmas

I've got just a few more things to finish - how about you?   My new machine has made going through all these projects so much fun!

My daughter and I made this doll quilt 'together'.  I put two chairs very close together so we could both guide the fabric.  She wore my quilting gloves to try to prevent getting stuck with pins.  She choose the fabric from the quilt store and I chose a very simple design that made the joint experience both fun and quick and also showed off the beautiful fabric print.  This quilt has been mailed off to one of her best friends who moved this past summer from NC to Colorado. 

Made two more bags - one was a twist on my Pure bags to send to one of my sister in laws (pictured below) and I also mailed off the bag for my giveaway winner.

Last night, we held our 2nd annual dessert party for a few friends.  We sent the kids upstairs for a bit of video gaming and then welcomed them down to desserts galore!   We had cupcakes decorated to look like ornaments - the Reeces cup on top simulates part of the ornament - along with homemade apple pie and gingerbread cookies with absolutely wonderful Yule log chocolate cake from the store.  (Excuse the plastic wrap in the photo - that was to keep the kids out before we were ready.  What I should have done was taken a picture after all of us had enjoyed ourselves.)

As party gifts, each guest got a small tree quilt.

One more thing - I found a giveaway you may want to check out at Retro Mummy.
Happy Stitching!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

And the winner is....

I have had so much fun visiting each and every blog as part of Sew Mama Sew's giveaway tour.  I found many talented people and new blogs to go visit and made new friends.   (My fingers crossed that I'll be a winner on one of these giveaways!!)

Hosting my own giveaway has been a blast.  For a new blogger, this contest has driven great visitor traffic to my site and helped me grow my follower list.   And to top off that fun, I was one of the featured blogs listed on the Holly Jolly Bingo's blog roll at .

I had 181 people enter my giveaway   (19 early followers who didn't comment and 162 people who left a comment.).  I've sent an email off to Sukie - the winner chosen complements of  Mr. Random Number.   Thanks to everyone who came by and visited.  That was a lot of fun and can't wait to do it again.

I've been finishing up a few last minute gifts (more to do today!) and decided to make this for myself - a small bag for my iphone.  I love my iphone but it sometimes gets lost inside my purse.  I wanted to fashion something quick and easy.

I started with a rectangle of fabric (I used Kate Spain's 12 Days of Christmas on both sides - the outside of my case will have the snowfake print.)   The rectangle was roughly 9 x 11 which I quilted.

  1. The case is made by folding it in thirds the same way you would fold a piece of paper to put it in an envelope. I folded the fabric and trimmed lengthwise until I was satisfied with how the flap would look.  (Have your iphone handy at this point.)  
  2. Decide on velcro placement and sew on the velcro.   
  3. Cover the inside edge (see the marking in the photo) with a strip of white fabric folded over.   
  4. Refold and sew both side seams (see photo).   After side seams are in, try the phone inside to test the fit.  Adjust if necessary.  By starting with fabric a bid wider than you need, you can adjust the side seams a bit and not need to use the seam ripper!  The beauty of this method is all the raw edges will be covered up and you don't ever need to measure too precisely. 
  5. When you are happy with the fit, trim the sides so have a 1/4 inch edge.
  6. Apply a binding around 3 sides using the same method you would for a quilt. 
 (Since I didn't take photos as I went, if you have questions on my mini-tutorial, just comment and I'd be happy to answer a question.)

And just because it is fun to share, here are some photos of some bags I finished to give as gifts to some teachers - a quick quilting, add a gift card and you make a teacher happy:

and to my daughter's French tutor (if you look carefully you'll see the photo my daughter took for me placed the bag right by a pink Eiffel Tower ornament on our tree!):

Happy Stitching!

Monday, December 13, 2010


** Giveaway now closed - winner to be announced shortly **

I am very pleased to take part in my very first giveaway - as part of the massive amount of giveaways that Sew Mama Sew is hosting.  You have December 17 so follow the button in my side bar to find lists of giveaways from bloggers and shops!!

I love to quilt and have been reading quilting blogs for almost a year.  A few weeks ago, I decided to join the fun and start my own blog to record my adventures in quilting and the occasional detour into knitting.  

One of my favorite fabric lines is Pure by Sweetwater.  I made a number of bags from a jelly roll as gifts and decided to make one more for my very first giveaway!

The giveaway bag will be similar with the Pure jelly roll strip on top but I'll be using slightly different colors than shown in the photo.  (A bit of a surprise.) 

To enter my giveaway just leave a comment on my blog - that's it.    The winner will be chosen Saturday, Dec 18th from my followers.    (This giveaway is for US residents only because I just can't make a trip to the post office this time of year without having to stand in long lines.)

Thanks for stopping by!

Happy stitching!!

(edited: I had originally asked for someone to become a follower to enter the giveaway - but switched to comments because some were having trouble.  If you entered via a follower, I will count your entry.  Only one entry per person.)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Friday Night Success

I had so much fun on my first 'official' Friday night sew in.  In my pj's with a glass of wine nearby, I enjoyed 4 hours and made a nice dent in my present list.

First, my table runner.  I pieced this last weekend.  The gingerbread men are raw-edge applique and I traced a cookie cutter to get that gingerbread shape.

The next project was  a couple of mini quilts for friends.  

 I also made 2 other mini quilts that given their coffee theme best fit with the mug-rug craze.  These are also for friends.

And finally, the beginnings of a bag (Paris themed) and a iPhone case.

I plan to add the binding to everything today and finish up the last two items.  After that, I may tackle 4 more bags as teacher gifts.

This is on top of getting the Christmas cards in the mail, digging through the clutter to get my house in order and some errands.

Happy stitching!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Gather the ingredients

We had a bit of a snowy surprise this past Saturday.  It doesn't snow very often in NC but it certainly doesn't snow this early in December.  It only amounted to a dusting ....

and a bit of wild life sighting in our back yard .....

There wasn't enough snow to make a snowman but a purchase from Target put this little guy on my front porch:

There was some time for quilting.  First one has to gather the ingredients....

Happy stitching.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Fresh Stars

First, a finish - made this fun little bag to hold my binding supplies - the label comes from Sweetwater.  I went a bit wonky on the handle and put one end on each side of the bag.  It works well and is long enough to get out of the way when you are accessing the stuff in the zippered bag.

Have you caught the Schnibbles addiction?  My favorite quilt blocks are stars or pinwheels so when I saw the opportunity to enter Quilting Gallery's contest on star quilts, I was excited to entry my first little quilt.  This hangs proudly in our family room and I just love the way it turned out.

I used charm packs of Fresh Cottons from Fig Tree Quilts.

Please go vote for my quilt at Quilting Gallery's.

Happy stitching!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Making my list and checking it twice!

Save the date - Friday night sew in Dec 10!  I plan to open the wine and use the time to make a dent in my remaining gifts.  (My husband is scheduled to take the kids to see an iMax movie that night so the timing could not be better!)  Why don't you join?  You can find more information here.

Have you checked out the fun regarding the Henry Glass Designer Holiday Project Parade?  Only on day 2 and I've found new and talented people with great ideas and a chance to win some great prizes.    You can join in here.